We love movies here at TW. We’re avid Netflix consumers and theatergoers and even dabble in some celebrity gossip every once in a while between tasks. We asked our followers on Instagram if they’d enjoy a monthly movie and TV round-up, and many of you said yes. We’re glad to be surrounded by fellow cinephiles!

As tsuyu (Japan’s rainy season) starts, we’ve got a diverse list of titles to keep you entertained indoors, safe from the rain and slippery escalators.

New Releases

Courtesy of Netflix

Stranger Things: Season 3
July 4


This Netflix original took the world by storm in record time when it released its first season back in 2016. Many blame (or appreciate) the E.T., Stand by Me and The Shining homages pulling at the heartstrings of millennials. Season 3 will unveil a summer vacation adventure starring everybody’s favorite young cast, as romance blossoms and Demogorgon evolves. How quickly can you binge it? 


Sink or Swim
July 12

Japanese theatres show a surprising number of foreign films, especially favoring Cannes and Oscar winners and nominees. This French title is sure to be a promising and wholesome ride. The premise is simple: middle-aged men who have lost their self-esteem along the way are united by a single goal, and that is to compete (and win) a synchronized swimming competition. I said the premise was simple, not ordinary. This film shines a light of common issues often ignored and marginalizing including depression, anxiety and other mental illnesses. It might or might not make you cry, but will definitely make you want to call your dad. 


Toy Story 4
July 12

What was a cherished childhood movie has turned into arguably the most anticipated film of the summer by young and long-time fans of Pixar animation. With the roaring success of Toy Story 3 nine years ago (yes, it’s been that long), it was only a matter of time before a fourth film was written and produced. And though Tom Hanks suspects this might be the last, as the beloved characters deal with becoming lost toys, one can only hope that isn’t the end.


Neon Genesis Evangelion

Among the latest arrival on Netflix, conveniently synched up with the confirmation of the final film of the iconic franchise, we’re ready to dive back into the dark, confusing world of Neon Genesis Evangelion. If the characters look familiar to you, you might have seen life-size cutouts outside pachinko parlors or while window shopping in Akihabara. One can argue they’ve shaped a generation. If you haven’t watched the short series and three movies, you have until 2020 to catch up and be ready for the long-awaited final instalment. Be ready to be confused, have questions that will never be answered and constantly be disappointed by protagonist Shinji Ikari.

Courtesy of Netflix

Rilakkuma and Kaoru

Rilakkuma is one of those Japanese characters that’s been around for nearly two decades. In April, Netflix released a 13-episode stop-motion animation series about the adored mascot. Following the story of Kaoru, the series covers the complexities of love and friendships and other adult-life challenges. It’s endearing, easy-going, just a tad whimsical and oh-so-relatable.